I sadly missed the Mars, Venus and moon conjunction last month 😦 But I hope to catch the solar eclipse coming up!
It all happens on March 20th – put it in your diary now!
The path of totality (where you can see the FULL eclipse) passes over the North Atlantic, North sea and Norwegian sea. So, not a lot of people will see the full effect! There are a few islands, I think, that will.
However, many of us will be able to see a partial eclipse (if the weather is clear, fingers crossed!!!) 😀
Okay, safety first.
NEVER LOOK DIRECTLY AT THE SUN!
Don’t look at it through regular glasses, sunglasses, binoculars, telescopes or cameras either.
My nearest big city is London, here are the London circumstances: The maximum obscuration we’ll see is around 85%. The eclipse will start about 08:24 and end at 10:40. The peak will be around 09:30.
Click here to find your city scroll down to the table, scroll to find your city and click on local circumstances next to your city listing.
- See the path the eclipse will take (NASA)
- Find out where you can see it, and how to make pin hole viewer (BAA)
- See an animated visualisation of the eclipse shadows passing over the Earth (Earthsky.org)
You can buy eclipse glasses and viewers so you can directly observe the event. Make sure any you use are fit for purpose. I’ve ordered mine from Jodrell bank.
This eclipse, on March 20, occurs on the same day as the Spring equinox, and when the moon is a super moon!
A super moon occurs when the moon is at its closest to Earth (perigee) and it’s either a new moon or a full moon. Because it’s closer to us, it appears bigger and brighter than normal. The March 2015 new moon comes only 14 hours after reaching lunar perigee.
New moon is the 1st phase of the Moon. This is when it is closest to the Sun in it’s orbit. This means it’s not always visible to us because we can only see the dark side of the moon. It can sometimes be seen when it’s illuminated by earth-shine (light reflected from Earth), OR we see it’s silhouette during a solar eclipse.
Isn’t it fascinating and exciting!? 😀
BBC Stargazing Live will be on from the 18th to the 20th and will no doubt cover the eclipse.
If you’re interested in astronomy, especially if you’re new to it, I recommend watching CrashCourse Astronomy with Phil Plait on YouTube. It’s a very well explained introduction to astronomy.
If you love eclipses, or astronomical photography check out this KickStarter campaign for ‘Chasing Shadows’ by Nelson Quan. He’s making a documentary about eclipse chaser Geoff Sims. It will include footage of the 20th March eclipse.